Yuzuru Hanyu says quad Axel is ‘only motivation’


Nobody has attempted a quadruple Axel in competition, a jump that would require four-and-a-half rotations. The base value of the triple Axel is 8.5 points, while a double Axel is worth significantly less at 3.3 points.

However, two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan isn’t counting it out one day, according to his remarks at a recent press conference in PyeongChang:

“I have achieved what I set out to do and I have no intention of retiring,” he said, according to Kyodo News. “Whenever I think about whether I would like to do something else outside skating, it is skating that I always come back to.

“I think I have devoted myself to skating from the bottom of my heart, and I want to do that for a little longer. I want to try a quadruple Axel and that is my only motivation right now.”

It’s a notion considered so far-fetched (today) that the International Judging System hadn’t assigned a base value to the jump, until recently: 15.0 points. Hypothetically, even trying a quad Axel and falling would be worth about the same as much as a perfectly-executed clean triple Axel.  

Hanyu’s coach, two-time Olympic silver medalist Brian Orser, said his pupil has tried the jump in practice. He seemed worried, according to a transcribed interview from InsideSkating.net:

Some new record, a new jump? Quadruple Axel?
Oh God, don’t even… [Brian does a ‘face-palm’ gesture, then laughs]. I don’t want him to get hurt!
So you don’t want him to try that?
Oh, he has tried that.
Impossible today, maybe, but maybe not impossible for long.

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